As opposed to the old hard cash, modern times boast of multifarious sources of payment – cash, check, credit card, debit card, mobile wallets and online options, all of which serve as convenient and easily accessible outlets for the younger, techno-savvy generation of a rapidly changing world. However, an integration of such complex payment technology is contingent upon an overhaul of existent hardware and software which can pose a challenge to a business owner’s ability to keep his business viable and afloat given the implications inherent in the process.
One of the most common complaints of small retailers like those owing convenience stores, bars, and single location restaurants are the hefty costs associated with accepting credit and debit cards since Card processing fees invariably put a strain on the already thin margins for many business owners.
A recent settlement on a long-running court case in New York regarding surcharging could be a game changer for merchants who have been shouldering the burden of credit card processing fees. According to a Newsday article, the settlement will allow New York retailers to pass surcharge fees on to consumers as long as the additional amount is disclosed in monetary terms. California, Florida and Texas are among other states who have overturned surcharge bans, allowing retailers to share or pass on the burden of using plastic. While surcharge fees are controversial, cash discount programs are legal in all 50 states.
Demystifying the Cash Discount
Surcharge fees are often confused with cash discounts, creating uncertainty as to the application and legality of cash discount programs. The 2010 Dodd-Frank Law, in the Durbin Amendment, states that businesses are permitted to offer a discount to customers as an incentive for customers to pay by alternative methods. The distinction is best explained through the posted price of an item or service. According to a Visa representative, “merchants can provide a lower price for cash acceptance… However, merchants are not permitted to post a price for cash and then charge a higher price for cards.”
A cash discount program will allow merchants to provide customers what they desire the most -i.e. the luxury to avail discounted prices when they opt for cash payments. This in turn eliminates the storewide service charges as well as brings reduced costs for both the customer and business owner, thus making it a deal-breaker where the stakes are relatively balanced between two co dependent parties.
Better for Business, Better for Customers
The immense difference brought about by our innovative business programme makes it hard to dispute or ignore the startling prospects of a cash discount program for both retailers and their customers. Benefits include:
- Reduced Fees: The most obvious benefit is reducing or eliminating fees associated with credit cards usage. Merchants are able to reduce processing fees that cut into their profit margins and consumers avoid credit interest rates on small purchases.
- Simplicity: it’s primarliy the simple, hassle -free and straightforward appeal of a cash discount programme that renders it so attractive and accessible for employees and customers alike to understand. Since all items in the store are priced with a built-in service fee that is deducted if consumers pay with cash, pricing disputes, interest rates, processing fees, charge backs and other complicated accounting items can be drastically reduced for all parties.
- Less Debt: Last but not the least, Merchants are able to capitalise on more profit as reduce credit card charge offs. Consumers are also less likely to build up significant credit card debt if offered a discounted cash option.
With a wide variety of payment options, credit card processing can be an encumbrance more so for businesses with minimal budgets. In such stringent situations, cash discount programmes can prove a moderating influence for Retailers seeking to cut down fees that impinge their profit -making potential while ensuring affordable prices for customers.
To learn more about how a cash discount program can benefit your business, contact us today.
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